From here to maternity – A vintage 1950s wedding dress alteration

Most brides like to pride themselves on having a perfectly planned wedding. But inevitably there are some things you just can’t prepare for… A recent bride of mine had her whole wedding organised to a tee, until – surprise! – she became pregnant.  She had already bought herself a vintage 1950’s wedding dress some months before, only to realise eight weeks prior to the wedding, that it wasn’t going to fit. She came to me very worried, as she had fallen in love with the dress and couldn’t imagine walking down the aisle in anything else! After an initial meeting to look at the dress and discuss some ideas, we came up with the perfect plan….



Original 1950s wedding dress

1950’s lace floor-length dress with long-sleeves

As a 1950s dress, it was naturally cinched in at the waist, with a full flared skirt. To make it work for my client’s expanding bump, I raised the waistline 4 inches, creating a new ’empire-line’ waist. It meant that the skirt now became ankle length rather than floor-length but looked great as it still really suited the style.

Having raised the skirt, eliminating the focus on the cinched in waist,  its several layers took on a much more puffed-out appearance, which really didn’t flatter her bump. To remedy this, I removed both of its petticoats so that the flare was concentrated at the centre, rather than at the sides. I also added a little ribbon sash which helped to pull focus to the new waistline.

Because the dress had a complete lace overlay and contrasting detail to the bust area, it appeared to consume her petite figure. By re-styling the sleeves, a more delicate look was created, which in turn helped to flatter her bump.

The result was a pretty, flowing wedding dress which would work through all stages of her pregancy. No need to throw away the dress of her dreams and fork out hundreds more pounds for a new dress!




Re-styled 1950’s wedding dress with ’empire’ waist-line and delicate lace sleeves.


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